As Israel forge strong ties with some Gulf states following Donald Trump’s declaration of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, an overwhelmingly excited Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has urged Europeans to emulate nations that don’t even recognize his country’s right to exist.
Netanyahu made the statement while addressing international diplomats in the aftermath of Trump’s delivery of his controversial 2016 presidential election promise to Israel.
Your country and you will always come first, my love (Image source: Qpress)
“I ask that your policies to Israel, especially if you are from Europe, that your actual policies be no more and no less than the policies of the Arab world,” Netanyahu said.
“Did you hear what I just said? The actual policies of your countries will be the actual policies of the Arab world.”
Israel shares the same antipathy threats with neighboring country Iran but has managed to successfully deepen ties with some Gulf states, though their relations have been muted while the Israeli-Palestinian conflict lingers.
Other Middle-eastern countries which showed anger and disapproval towards Trump’s political declaration in favor of Israel are Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Egypt although the countries’ representative have applied diplomacy in their choice of words.
Contrary to expectations of riots and violence in response to the news, citizens of most Muslim-majority countries have shown control in the face of provocation.
Joshua Teitelbaum, a senior research fellow at Bar-Ilan University’s Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies, said Netanyahu’s statement against European countries is “puzzling,” adding that “it appears the prime minister knew it might be.”
“If I were to extrapolate, I would think that he means that in back-channel talks, Israel and the leadership of the Sunni Muslim countries see the Middle East in similar terms with respect to the threat of radical Islam and Iran, while European capitals are still prioritizing the Palestinian issue.” Joshua said.
Mr. Netanyahu also dispatched the only Arab member in his cabinet, Ayoob Kara, to deliver a similar message to the European Parliament on Thursday, the lawmaker was quoted as saying.
The Israeli prime minister is scheduled to visit Paris and Brussels next week.
It is yet a mystery how Mr. Trump found courage on Wednesday, as earlier reported, to take a high-risk political gamble, breaking nearly 70 years of U.S. policy to accept Israel’s designation of Jerusalem as its capital.
In the U.S. President’s opinion, his decision is not intended to derail the Middle East peace initiatives being formulated by his son-in-law and senior aide, Jared Kushner.
Trump believes a peace deal with the Palestinians is necessary and can only work if Israel and other Islamic countries such as Saudi Arabia shows interest in the peace accord, which obviously, no longer holds water.
Somalia has called Trump’s Jerusalem move a “dangerous decision.”